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Broken Hearts and Broken Minds


by Jane Blystone
Sometimes staffers are afraid to write stories about depression because the topic is too close to home, but the staffers of the Crimson Crier at Sparkman High School in Madison, Alabama, did that very thing this past school year.

Their adviser Erin Coggins shared the results of their work.

“We decided to do this package after a staff member spoke to us about her struggles with depression. It was a teary newsroom that day and the staffer was almost begging us to address mental illness in our October spread. We did. According to the counseling department, this spread evoked students to discuss their own battles with depression and mental illness. Teachers used the spread as a conversation starter and as English prompts. The two stories included on the spread are heartfelt and the graphics hit home. We are proud of how it turned out in the end.”

Broken Hearts/Broken Minds is an intense read and gives the readership opportunity to discuss this issue and encourages peers to seek assistance in times of depression. Filled with national statistics and localized relevance, this spread provides a strong approach for student publications across the country to begin to discuss teen depression and its impact in their student media.

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